Businesses Struggle to Retain IT Talent and Deal With Attrition

Approximately half of IT leaders and IT professionals said they do not believe modular and temporary project teams are the future of work.

it talent and teksystems

Two out of five IT leaders and IT professionals say their organization struggles to retain IT talent, according to a survey by TEKsystems.

Attrition seems to affect all teams equally, as more than two-thirds of IT leaders (67 percent) report retention is a challenge across all the skill sets they manage.

The survey findings represent the views of more than 400 IT leaders and 1,500 IT professionals, which revealed that 43 percent of IT leaders do not have the infrastructure necessary to quickly assemble or disassemble teams to respond to IT demands.

"The employment value proposition (EVP) drivers are basically a road map—yes, compensation is No. 1, but everything that comes after that can be leveraged to build an EVP that will attract and retain talent," TEKsystems research manager Jason Hayman told eWEEK. "Organizations should look at that ranking list and focus on the components that best fit their company culture. They can then customize them to fit their needs."

Approximately half of IT leaders (51 percent) and IT professionals (49 percent) said they do not believe modular and temporary project teams are the future of work.

Compensation is viewed as the most influential factor for why an employee would stay with or leave his or her current position, according to more than eight in 10 IT leaders (82 percent) and IT professionals (87 percent).

"If I'm a small business, perhaps I don't have the budget or the organizational structure to create multiple layers of advancement for my IT talent," Hayman said. "Instead of focus on providing opportunities for IT talent to expand and hone their skills, give them opportunities to work on multiple projects or projects with a high-degree of visibility within the organization."

He said also to think about giving promotions through titles or responsibilities—a business might not be able to give an employee a salary bump but can make that person a senior network engineer, and let him or her oversee a team of two or three people.

"In many cases, quality IT talent is in the driver's seat. Supply can't keep up with demand," Hayman said. "The IT job market is highly competitive, and organizations continue to struggle through an unending cycle of retaining talent. When that fails, [they must] attract quality IT talent."

He explained that most organizations are not equipped to function in a world of work where IT teams are constantly assembled, dissembled and reassembled as projects dictate.

"There is enough data and information out there that illustrates what IT talent wants but organizations are unable to capitalize on that knowledge to become a destination employer for IT talent," Hayman said.

Overall, IT leaders and professionals disagree on the existence of benefits, talent management and development programs.

The report indicated that IT leaders say their organizations offer a wide variety of employee benefits programs, but that only a small fraction of IT employees are aware these programs exist, indicating a lack of communication, participation or both.